ONCE UPON A HALLOWEEN
WRITTEN BY ANDREA WETZLER
PHOTOGRAPHY BY CHRISTIAN JAEGER
NOVEMBER 30, 2020
Halloween acts as a nice barrier between the two sides of fall; the fall that could still feel like late summer, and the fall that involves Thanksgiving, scarves, nutmeg, and mittens. As this year’s Halloween fell on a Saturday, it seemed like a sure recipe for a full bender of a weekend. The pandemic obviously changed those plans.
It wasn't like any of us were planning on trick-or-treating, the true gem of Halloween. Unknown to those trick-or-treating children, a whole world of celebration exists only for the adults (wink wink). Perhaps kids don't realize this because their parents aren't throwing big halloween parties (if my impression was correct, the multitudes of parents trailing their too-eager kids practically doped on sugar felt like an impromptu PTA gathering -- a parent social event if you will -- with a smattering of witches’ hats and superhero capes).
This is albeit a very American world (the same one that hears St. Patrick's day and immediately thinks day drinking until you're ill). Perhaps that is also why we saw so many upticks in COVID-19 cases post-Halloween in a fashion that reflects mass non-compliance: only such an individualistic society could produce from a holiday driven to its current popularity purely by consumerism.
At the same time, the marking of the end of early fall holds at least some kind of significance for most Americans. I can only speak for myself, but come November 1st, the change in the air feels more palpable than with any other new month except perhaps every New Year's Day.
Our apartment was wondering how to celebrate, considering all this, especially since for one of us (Christian), this holiday has a marked significance (just ask him how many Halloween posters he owns). Together, we thought it would be fun to dress up in as many costume ideas as we had time for. We also wanted to try to do this sustainably; i.e. we wouldn’t buy anything in order to do this. Not only did this affirm our beliefs on the textile industry and its overproduction of goods not meant to be used regularly (no reason to add to the consumerism), but it would also test the limits of our creativity. More, it would mean we had some quality time together to get as silly as we wanted, and see in action the mutating of traditions.
So, on the afternoon of October 31st, 2020, my roommates and I found ourselves in some costumes…
Kiki (obviously from the childhood classic Kiki’s Delivery Service) with a certifiable witch’s broom and NOT our kitchen’s.
When Thing 2 arrives without a Thing 1.
Jack Twist and his can of beans (if you know you know).
When you find you’re out of white sheets, put a twist on a classic and become a fancy ghost.
but then you remember it was planned because you’re all friends.
There are always some unidentifiable costumes that only make sense to those wearing them. As certified Pink Panther (2006) nuts, Christian and Séar are here wearing their “Gas Mask Bandit” costumes (I wouldn’t look that up, it would need some mental gymnastics).
Hope everyone’s Halloween was as exciting as ours.